We tend to field a lot of inside information here at Engadget HQ, but we've gotten not one, but two bits from separate, trustworthy insiders that Apple's not satisfied merely vending Audible
's books-on-digital-audio solution. With the iRex iLiad
and Sony PRS-500 Portable Reader
both right around the corner, is it possible the next iPod might catch the eBook bug? We'd say the possibility is very real, since according to a source at a major publishing house, they were just ordered to archive all their manuscripts -- every single one -- and send them over to Apple's Cupertino HQ. A separate trusted source let us know that the next iPod will have a substantial amount of screen real estate (as we'd all suspected), as well as a book reading mode that pumps up the contrast and drops into monochrome for easy reading. It's no e-ink, sure, but a widescreen iPod would be well suited for the purpose, and according to our source, the books you'd buy (presumably through iTunes) won't have an expiration -- kind of like Apple-bought music, as well, but contradictory to the movie rental scheme we've heard rumored
. Could they please just rename it the iTunes Music, Movies, and Book Store and get it over with already?